How to Make Your Own Pebble Tiles for Floors

Flora Richards-Gustafson

Natural stone floors, particularly those made of river rocks, can give your home a trendy, natural look. To make the installation of pebbles on a floor simple, retailers offer pebbles attached to mesh. Pebble tiles, however, can be expensive, and there is no guarantee regarding the uniformity of color.

Pebble floors are simple to maintain.

Collecting your own pebbles to make your own tiles for floors can personalize a flooring project and be a fun activity for you and your family.

  1. Choose pebbles for your floor. You can find pebbles along the shore of a beach, river, lake or stream. If you don't have time to hunt for pebbles, visit a local quarry that sells smooth pebbles, or purchase river rocks from a craft store. When gathering pebbles, select smooth ones that are similar.

  2. Rinse the pebbles to remove dirt and dust. Allow the pebbles to dry completely.

  3. Apply a high-quality, thin set mortar or tile adhesive appropriate for indoor use on a 1-foot section of the floor you wish to tile. Spread the mortar with the notched end of a trowel, creating wavy lines in the adhesive.

  4. Place the pebbles onto the mortar until you fill up the mortar. Lightly press the pebbles into the adhesive, but don't press them in too deep.

  5. Continue spreading mortar onto 1-foot sections of the floor and gently pressing pebbles on top until you have filled the entire floor space.

  6. Seal the stones with a penetrating sealer, following the manufacturer’s instructions.

  7. Apply sanded grout over the pebbles with the trowel, working in 2-by-2-foot sections or smaller. The grout should nearly cover the pebbles. Allow the grout to cure for 30 minutes.

  8. Brush away the excess grout from the tops of the pebbles with a scrub brush that has still bristles.

  9. Use a moist sponge to remove more grout until you have the look you desire. Rinse the sponge in water periodically and wring it well. Allow the grout to cure.

  10. Reapply the sealer over the grouted pebbles and allow it to dry.

  11. Tip

    If you want to alter the color or glossiness of the pebbles, use a natural stone color and/or shine enhancer before applying the sealer and grout.